Instances of piracy in India are recorded on Vedas. However, the most interesting one is with the issue of war due to piracy. At the time of the Muslim invasion of Sindh, in the 7th century, the new kingdom of Hijaz launched trade ships to India especially Sindh. However, a ship en route from Sri Lanka to Baghdad was carrying valuables and some slave girls which were looted off Debal (near modern Karachi) by the Meds. One of the slave girls sent a letter challenging the Caliph saying that he cannot rescue them. The Caliph sent a portion of his army to save the slaves. But, the people of Sindh became wary and thought of this army as a threat. This became an excuse for war between Arabs and Sindh. Since the 14th century the Deccan (Southern Peninsular region of India) was divided into two entities: on the one side stood the Muslim Bahmani Sultanate and on the other stood the Hindu kings rallied around the Vijayanagara Empire. Continuous wars demanded frequent resupplies of fresh horses, which were imported through sea routes from Persia and Africa. This trade was subjected to frequent raids by thriving bands of pirates based in the coastal cities of Western India. One of such was Timoji, who operated off Anjadip Island both as a privateer (by seizing horse traders, that he rendered to the raja of Honavar) and as a pirate who attacked the Kerala merchant fleets that traded pepper with Gujarat.
During the 16th and 17th centuries, there was frequent European piracy against Mughal Indian merchants, especially those en route to Mecca for Hajj. The situation came to a head, when Portuguese attacked and captured the vessel Rahimi which belonged to Mariam Zamani the Mughal queen, which led to the Mughal seizure of the Portuguese town Daman. In the 18th century, the famous Maratha privateer Kanhoji Angre ruled the seas between Mumbai and Goa. The Marathas attacked British shipping and insisted that East India Company ships pay taxes if sailing through their waters.
At one stage, the pirate population of Madagascar numbered close to 1000. Île Sainte-Marie became a popular base for pirates throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. The most famous pirate utopia is that of the probably fictional Captain Misson and his pirate crew, who allegedly founded the free colony of Libertatia in northern Madagascar in the late 17th century, until it was destroyed in a surprise attack by the island natives in 1694.
The southern coast of the Persian Gulf became known as the Pirate Coast as raiders based there harassed foreign shipping. Early British expeditions to protect the Indian Ocean trade from raiders at Ras al-Khaimah led to campaigns against that headquarters and other harbours along the coast in 1819. Captain Kidd captured many vessels of the Mughal King.
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